This story begins in May 1991. I was living in Washington DC with a good paying job, a condominium and a Chevrolet car. Safe to say I was living a good and comfortable life. In May of that year I received a phone call telling me Mengistu Haile Maryam had run away. I got with other Ethiopians and headed to the embassy where we protested shutting it down until our Anti-Mengistu allies opened it. At that time our father Sultan alimirah the leader of the afars returned along with his son and Meles Zenawi heading to Addis Ababa.
Under the sultans instruction I decided to return and serve the Ethiopia that I love so dearly. Where I lived in Washington I had many friends, Ethiopians and non Ethiopians alike. Many of my friends advised me not to leave, not to trust TPLF and not to leave the life that I was enjoying. Their advice made sense to me but the respect that I had for my sultan and the love I have for my country Ethiopia made me not listen to their advice and make the decision to return. On July 1st 1991 I arrived at Bole international airport where I was received by Sultan Hanfare where we participated in the July conference.
Hanfare and his father Sultan Alimirah were representing the afar people while I attended as an observer. What we heard at that meeting had disappointed us including the Sultan who did not want the dismemberment of Ethiopia but we thought since they came from the battlefield the TPLF and us would be able to work. During the transitional government I was appointed as the ambassador of Ethiopia to Nigeria. Later on in my career to Sudan and then Kuwait. After working several years we were disappointed by TPLF leaders and I chose to leave the service to the regime and the country I love, Ethiopia. This would lead me to Canada in November 2010. I would like to thank the government and the people of Canada for everything they have done for my family and I.
I never thought I would go back to Ethiopia as long as the TPLF regime is ruling but fortunately a sudden disappearance of the TPLF leaders occurred. One by one the TPLF would cease to exist and Dr Abiy Ahmed was elected. While we were happy that Abiy was in power and we admired the actions he was taking an assassination attempt happened to our leader while he was speaking on TV. I was so angry because I thought these people wanted to kill the only hope we have got at that time. I went to speak at Abay media and condemned the attacks directed to Abiy Ahmed in my name and representing the afar sultan Hanfare Alimirah. From that day on me and my friends decided to help Abiy Ahmed and his team to stay in power. Not for his sake but for betterment of Ethiopia.
Abiy Ahmed released all political prisoners and media figures. He allowed all exiles, opposition leaders to return & for the first time in history Ethiopia had free speech. That is why we supported him. Our prime minister Abiy Ahmed was visiting Ethiopian communities across the diaspora when me and my friends headed to welcome him in Washington D.C. Later on in September myself along with Omar Alimirah, Sultan Hanfare and other Afar opposition leaders returned to Ethiopia and thanked the Abiy government for receiving us and treated us as guests of the government.
For the first time in many years we could see our loved ones,our region, our neighboring regions and as Abiy Ahmed stated this was truly a time of peace and reconciliation which we participated in. Later on I returned to Canada but on January 13 2019 I went back to Addis Ababa with the sultan and others as we tried to do our best to continue the efforts of Abiy’s government. While I was in Ethiopia for about a year I observed some good and not so good things in our country. One thing I’m sure of is Ethiopia is in good hands. Not to flatter the current regime but this is what I have observed through the actions which have been taken in public. This government has given the people several tangible actions worth appreciating. Our leader is concerned for all Ethiopians. He free’s the political prisoners he has respect and visits the communities, he leads by example. I can say that Ethiopia finally has a good leader.
More observations coming soon.